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Casebook of Psychosomatic Medicine

James A. Bourgeois, O.D., M.D., F.R.C.P.C., Debra Kahn, M.D., Kemuel L. Philbrick, M.D., and John M. Bostwick, M.D.

  • ISBN 978-1-58562-299-3
  • Item #62299

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The practice of medicine is both learned and advanced through the compilation and study of cases—vignettes that record the presentation, diagnosis, and treatment of individual patients and diseases. This is especially true of psychosomatic medicine (PSM), which depends on the compelling case to distill clinical knowledge and communicate it to students, residents, and clinicians. An invaluable contribution to the field, the Casebook of Psychosomatic Medicine describes the psychiatric symptoms and/or illnesses managed by the PSM psychiatrist in collaboration with other medical colleagues. The book presents a broad range of cases illustrating the medical, psychosocial, and intertwined situations psychiatrists are likely to encounter in an academic medical center setting.

No other single volume offers a broader range of engaging, detailed, and nuanced PSM cases, or grounds them so firmly in a psychiatric, psychosocial, and spiritual context. Here are just a few of this patient-centered book's most impressive and useful features:

  • The relevant science underlying each case is addressed in discussion sections, allowing the book to be read as a stand-alone volume. Alternatively, the cases can be read as instructive and insightful illustrations by the reader who has already absorbed the fundamentals of PSM from standard textbooks in the field.
  • This user-friendly book is organized by the organ system or disease type of the presenting illness or symptom.
  • Content rare in volumes of this kind includes detailed coverage of the diagnosis and management of cognitive disorders; the management of drug toxicity states; determinations of decisional capacity for medical decision making; and stress and adaptation, an issue the PSM psychiatrist encounters daily.
  • The authors strongly believe that one of the most crucial roles for the psychiatrist is in the medical center, and the book reflects that orientation.
  • The book addresses the importance of understanding the impact of patients' systemic illnesses on their psychiatric symptoms, and modifying interventions and care accordingly. These abilities are critical to sound PSM practice.

Although PSM has a long and noble history, it is the newest of the psychiatric subspecialties, and as the literature expands, more and more clinicians will incorporate PSM treatment modalities into their practice. The Casebook of Psychosomatic Medicine is an essential contribution to that body of knowledge and establishes a new standard with which to face the future of this exciting field.


  • Contributors
  • Preface
  • Chapter 1. Challenges in Psychiatric Assessment
  • Chapter 2. Acute Mental Status Changes/Delirium
  • Chapter 3. Heart Disease
  • Chapter 4. Lung Disease
  • Chapter 5. Gastrointestinal Disorders
  • Chapter 6. Renal Disease
  • Chapter 7. Endocrine Disorders
  • Chapter 8. Oncology
  • Chapter 9. Rheumatology
  • Chapter 10. Infectious Diseases
  • Chapter 11. Dermatology
  • Chapter 12. Surgery
  • Chapter 13. Organ Transplantation
  • Chapter 14. Neurology and Neurosurgery
  • Chapter 15. Obstetrics and Gynecology and Pediatrics
  • Chapter 16. Pain
  • Chapter 17. Psychosis in the General Medical Setting
  • Diagnosis Index
  • Subject Index

About the Authors

James A. Bourgeois, O.D., M.D., is Alan Stoudemire Professor of Psychosomatic Medicine in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of California, Davis Medical Center in Sacramento, California.

Debra Kahn, M.D., is Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the University of California, Davis Medical Center in Sacramento, California.

Kemuel Philbrick, M.D., is Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Mayo Medical School, College of Medicine, and Consultant in Psychiatry at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

John Michael Bostwick, M.D., is Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the Mayo Medical School, College of Medicine, and Consultant in Psychiatry at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

This compendium of fascinating cases, from the routine to the unusual, brings to life the content and practice of Psychosomatic Medicine. The volume exemplifies the utility of the case report as an essential form of clinical supervision. Clearly written and well referenced it should be on the shelves of both general psychiatrists and specialists.—Thomas N. Wise, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Services, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

There is no better way to learn psychosomatic medicine than through stories about patients. In this first and only casebook in our recently-accredited subspecialty, Dr. Bourgeois and his colleagues present us with a treasure trove of hauntingly familiar psychiatric consultations on patients with complex and severe medical and psychiatric illness. Each case is accompanied by a discussion based on clinical acumen and available evidence from the literature, providing trainees and faculty with a remarkable paradigm for learning and teaching psychosomatic medicine.—Mary Ann Cohen, M.D., Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai School of Medicine

How lucky we are that Dr. Bourgeois and colleagues have given us a superb compilation of interesting and thought-provoking cases on psychosomatic medicine! This is a wonderful text to use for teaching and training students, residents, and colleagues about the complex nature of symptoms and overlapping clinical issues in psychosomatic medicine. Written in a very clinically-friendly format and style, this text is a very practical and needed text for our field.James A. Bourgeois, O.D., M.D., Debra Kahn, M.D., Kemuel L. Philbrick, M.D., and John Michael Bostwick, M.D.—Michelle B. Riba, M.D., M.S., Professor and Associate Chair for Integrated Medical and Psychiatric Services, University of Michigan

In this clearly conceived and well-written text, Bourgeois and colleagues have canvassed the key clinical issues in psychosomatic medicine. The book is organized around patient cases, which serve as the platform for valuable discussions of cardinal features of disease, current evidence, and rigorous decisionmaking and intervention strategies Casebook of Psychosomatic Medicine is a welcome book that is certain to aid physicians and physicians-in-training throughout all of medicine.—Laura Weiss Roberts, M.D., M.A., Charles E. Kubly Professor & Chairman, Dept of Psychiatry & Behavioral Medicine, Professor of Bioethics, Dept of Population Health, Medical College of Wisconsin

The Casebook of Psychosomatic Medicine combines the authoritative expertise of a comprehensive textbook, the sharp brevity of a pocket guide, and the wise counsel of a trusted colleague. The dozens of cases and discussions reflect our field's burgeoning evidence base as well as its inevitable ambiguity, and they demonstrate how expert clinicians conceptualize complex situations. Interesting and thoughtful, the Casebook is a unique and invaluable addition to the library of anyone who treats patients on the border between psychiatry and the rest of medicine.—John W. Barnhill, M.D., Chief, Consultation-Liaison Service, NY-Presbyterian Hospital - Weill Cornell Med Center, Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry, Weill Med College of Cornell University

This is a compulsively readable and engaging account of the challenges and rewards of practising Psychosomatic Medicine. It is a treasure trove of clinical wisdom, resulting from the authors' many years in the trenches, and scholarly reflections on their experiences.
The book is a unique contribution to the literature in the extent and richness of the clinical presentations,and the seamless integration of psychological, biological,and sociocultural understanding of each case.—Maurice Steinberg, M.D., Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Albert Einstein College Of Medicine, Attending Psychiatrist, Long Island Jewish Medical Center

It's as if the reader has joined teaching rounds with Dr. Bourgeois and colleagues where you become immersed in the exciting world of psychosomatic medicine. This jewel of a casebook is interspersed with teaching pearls throughout, reminding us that our patients are our best teachers!—Linda L.M. Worley, MD, Professor, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, College of Medicine, Departments of Psychiatry & Obstetrics & Gynecology

The Casebook of Psychosomatic Medicine is a well-written collection of fascinating case reports derived from the authors' years of experience as psychosomatic medicine clinicians. The wide variety and number of compelling stories are a testament to their collective wisdom and skill. This is an enlightening, entertaining, and informative textbook that would be well suited for trainees as well as those who already practice psychosomatic medicine.
The reader should find this to be a very satisfying text that can be incorporated into coursework for medical students, a general-residency training program, or a psychosomatic-medicine fellowship. I would also recommend this book to the seasoned psychosomatic-medicine specialist, because the cases and discussions presented are thoroughly enjoyable, as well as educational.—The American Journal of Psychiatry, 8/7/2009

This is a very practical manual. Readers from medical students all the way up to seasoned clinicians will find it useful. Concepts come to life through well-chosen clinical cases. The discussion of each case is evidence-based with numerous and current references from the scientific literature. Anyone who regularly sees patients in a consultation-liaison setting or who cares for psychiatric patients with a high level of medical comorbidity will appreciate this book.—Doody Enterprises, 8/7/2009

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